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How to Bring History’s Hidden Figures to Life on the Page with New York Times Bestselling Author, Ilyon Woo

podcast March 4, 2024

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On episode 25 of the podcast, my guest is New York Times Bestselling author, Ilyon Woo.

Ilyon is the author of the new book, Master Slave Husband Wife: An Epic Journey from Slavery to Freedom and The Great Divorce: A Nineteenth-Century Mother’s Extraordinary Fight Against Her Husband, the Shakers, and Her Times. Her writing has also appeared in The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal,Time, and The New York Times

During our delightful conversation Ilyon shares:

  • When she fell in love with storytelling.
  • Why she’s obsessed with the Shakers.
  • Her secrets to writing thrilling, jump-off-the-page nonfiction.
  • How being Korean-American has impacted her career as a writer.
  • What the descendants of Willam and Ellen Craft, the subjects of Master, Slave, Husband, Wife, think of her portrayal of their famous relatives. 
  • Her advice for other BIPOC writers who want to write beyond their own cultural stories.

It’s another informative, inspiring and fun conversation with an award-winning BIPOC writer. 

I hope you love it!


To learn more about Ilyon Woo, visit her website: IlyonWoo.com and/or find her on Instagram @ilyonwooauthor. 


Buy a copy of the incredible, Master Slave, Husband Wife: An Epic Journey from Slavery  to Freedom from The Reed, Write, & Create Bookshop. 

To learn more about William and Ellen Craft, follow the Instagram account started by their descendants to share their story with the world. @WilliamandEllenCraft


If you want to read the book, Woo referenced during the conversation, it was Tiya Miles’ All that She Carried: The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, A Black Family Keepsake.


Check out Ilyon’s first book, the fascinating, The Great Divorce: A 19th Century Mother’s Extraordinary Fight Against Her Husband, The Shakers, and Her Times.

If you’re looking for more creative writing inspiration, and useful resources for your literary life, be sure to check out all of the amazing content at ReedWriteandCreate.com. 


Sign up for the monthly, Reed, Write, & Create newsletter for literary resources and opportunities delivered right  to your inbox.


If you’re a BIPOC woman writer looking for a supportive writing community to join, where you’ll find accountability partners, BETA readers for your work, and opportunities to get published and get paid, come to the Virtual Open House for The Sanctuary on March 17, 2024. Sign up HERE for more information and an invitation to the Open House.


Don’t buy your books on Amazon, support indie booksellers and shop online at the Reed, Write, & Create bookshop for a list of curated titles by BIPOC authors. 


Sharing is caring, so please share the name of this podcast with all of your BIPOC writer friends. Thanks!


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